Khan 11th 'tainted minister' Omar has to firefight in this coalition
With one more minister in dock over the alleged sexual assault case, chief minister Omar Abdullah-led-National Conference-Congress coalition seems to wind up its six-year tenure on a sour note.Updated: Feb 08, 2014 13:34 IST
With one more minister in dock over the alleged sexual assault case, chief minister Omar Abdullah-led-National Conference-Congress coalition seems to wind up its six-year tenure on a sour note.
With over half of his ministers grappling grave charges, the CM has been made to firefight all through his term.
Seven Congress ministers - GM Saroori, Peerzada Muhammad Sayeed, Taj Mohiuddin, Sham Lal Sharma, Raman Bhalla, RS Chib and Tara Chand - either lost their portfolios or resigned in the face of a series of allegations, ranging from influencing examination system, land grab, sub-standard medicines, irregularities in recruitment, indecent behavior, and poor healthcare leading to deaths of infants.
Senior NC leaders confirmed to the Hindustan Times that the frequent incidences of Congress leaders landing the coalition government in trouble forced Omar to reschedule development exercises and visit Delhi to meet the Congress high command to rein their leaders.
"Whenever an NC minister faced any allegation, he resigned immediately. The NC can only speak for its own ministers and their deeds," said Abdullah's political adviser Tanvir Sadiq.
Ruling NC's two leaders - home minister Sajjad Kitchloo and Choudhary Ramzan - also faced serious allegations. Kitchloo, who was reinstated as state home minister after a judicial inquiry gave him a clean chit, had resigned after Kishtwar communal riots. Ramzan still faces allegations of land grab in Srinagar.
Another cabinet minister, Ghulam Hassan Mir, an associate member of the Congress from north Kashmir, was accused of army payoffs after his name figured in an army's internal inquiry offering to topple the Omar government in 2010.
On Thursday, state health minister, Shabir Khan, also a Congress leader, became 11th minister to face grave charges, in his case, of sexual advances allegedly made towards a doctor.
Though, the chief minister himself landed in a major controversy in 2011 when a party worker died after visiting his residence in Srinagar. However, he was given a clean chit by a one-man commission constituted to investigate the death.
The NC leaders rule out its party paying for the sins of "tainted Congress leaders" in upcoming parliamentary and assembly polls, scheduled this year.
"NC man will be voted as NC man. We are a different party with a different ideology. Our leaders will not pay for others' sins," said Sadiq.
However, Opposition People's Democratic Party (PDP) has set all guns blazing at the coalition government.
"This government is a blot. This tenure was like a masala movie - money, murder and sex. It is a blot on the state polity," said PDP legislator and spokesman Naeem Akhtar.
First Published: Feb 08, 2014 13:31 IST